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What are some options for boosting energy without caffeine?

Q. Dear Terry, “I’m quitting coffee for a month to see if it decreases my anxiety. I really need some extra energy since I rely so much on coffee. What are some options for boosting energy without caffeine?” – Evan B., Longview, TX

A. Dear Evan, To help increase energy levels – physical and mental – I think red ginseng (Panax ginseng) can be very beneficial. Ginseng has been used for thousands of years to help improve energy levels. It is one of the world’s oldest adaptogens and can help you respond to stressors more appropriately. If you’re feeling mentally worn down, then ginseng can help you feel focused. If you’re feeling physically fatigued, then ginseng can help you find the stamina you need.

One of the biggest issues with ginseng is the cultivation. Wild ginseng is disappearing and farmed ginseng can be detrimental to the environment due to pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides. Fortunately, there are some new ways to grow ginseng that use novel hydroculture techniques, which results in a much cleaner and more powerful ginseng. Hydroculture techniques help to increase the levels of naturally occurring and highly sought-after compounds, called noble ginsenosides.

In a recent study by Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, world-renowned expert in chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia, this unique hydroculture red ginseng showed significant benefits in the participants. Participants were given ginseng in a capsule or chewable form for one month. At the end of the study, over 60% of participants noticed benefits. There was a 67% improvement in energy, 44% improvement in well-being, 48% improvement in mental clarity, 46% improvement in sleep, and 72% improvement in stamina.

I would take 100 mg of hydroculture red ginseng with gamma cyclodextrin for enhanced absorption or 200 mg of the same ginseng in a capsule form, once or twice per day. 

To help decrease anxiety, I would also add narrow-leaved coneflower (Echinacea angustifolia) to your daily regimen. This unique type of coneflower can help reduce anxiety as effectively as certain prescription medications, without the side effects. Certain compounds in this echinacea can influence brain receptors that help to instill a sense of calm and relaxation. This ingredient is safe enough to be taken daily. Make sure you look for a clinically studied, narrow-leaved coneflower root extract standardized for echinacoside and an alkamide profile in the right ratio to reduce anxiety.

I recommend 20 mg once or twice per day of the coneflower extract. 

Healthy Regards!

Terry . . . Naturally

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Terry is happy to provide his opinion on diet and nutrition, supplements and lifestyle choices. This information is for educational purposes only. It is not meant to replace the advice of your physician and is not to be considered medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Should you have any concerns please contact your physician directly.
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